An Iraqi commander says he believes some 300 Islamic State fighters remain in the small patch of territory still controlled by the group in Mosul’s Old City. Lt Gen Sami al-Aridi of Iraq’s special forces said on Wednesday that the militants are confined to a 500 square meter (600 sq. yard) area. He spoke the day after Iraq’s Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi congratulated the armed forces on a “big victory” in Mosul, despite ongoing clashes.
IS captured Mosul in a matter of days when it swept across northern and central Iraq in the summer of 2014. Iraqi forces backed by a US-led coalition launched a major operation to retake the city in October.